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4K Ultra HD Likely To Repeat the Failure of 3D Television

timothy posted about a year ago | from the nostradamus-was-wrong-for-once dept.

Displays 559

New submitter tvf_trp writes "Fox Sports VP Jerry Steinbers has just announced that the broadcaster is not looking to implement 4K broadcasting (which offers four times the resolution of today's HD), stating that 4K Ultra HD is a 'monumental task with not a lot of return.' Digital and broadcasting specialists have raised concerns about the future of 4K technology, drawing parallels with the 3D's trajectory, which despite its initial hype has failed to establish a significant market share due to high price and lack of 3D content. While offering some advantages over 3D (no need for specs, considerable improvement in video quality, etc), 4K's prospects will remain precarious until it can get broadcasters and movie makers on board."

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I would love 4K!!! (4, Funny)

JDeane (1402533) | about a year ago | (#45222509)

But I don't want to pay 4K.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (5, Insightful)

jerpyro (926071) | about a year ago | (#45222577)

I would love 4k too but I don't want to use it for a TV, I want to use it for a computer monitor (How many IDEs can you fit in 4k?). I keep looking at this particular TV and thinking about how much space I'd have to clear off on my desk to use it with my laptop:
http://www.amazon.com/Seiki-Digital-SE39UY04-39-Inch-Ultra/dp/B00DOPGO2G [amazon.com]

Much cheaper than a lot of the 4k monitors out there, but is the image quality good enough to not make your eyes bleed?

Re:I would love 4K!!! (1)

JDeane (1402533) | about a year ago | (#45222693)

Reading the first really long review it seems to work best as a 1080P monitor for PC's.

http://www.amazon.com/Seiki-Digital-SE39UY04-39-Inch-Ultra/product-reviews/B00DOPGO2G/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1 [amazon.com]

Re:I would love 4K!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222733)

Also check out the "Not Support" message in those images.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (5, Insightful)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#45222591)

Let me put it this way:
Linus Torvalds Advocates For 2560x1600 Standard Laptop Displays [slashdot.org]

The fact that laptops stagnated ten years ago (and even regressed, in many cases) at around half that in both directions is just sad.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (1)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#45222625)

And that was a year ago...

Re:I would love 4K!!! (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year ago | (#45222749)

My laptop has a higher resolution than that, not sure what stagnation is being referred to. Perhaps one should stop buying bargain bin laptops and then bitching about it afterwords.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (1)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#45222779)

I have last year's top end model of a MacBook Air.... :/
Not sure that would be considered bargain bin...

Re:I would love 4K!!! (1)

war4peace (1628283) | about a year ago | (#45222913)

Many Terminal rows! Yeah! :)

Re:I would love 4K!!! (4, Informative)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#45222605)

It will be like HD and 3D. In a few years it will become standard on mid range and even cheap TVs.

The key difference with 3D is not the cost of the TVs, it's the cost of the broadcast equipment and cameras. 3D was actually quite a cheap upgrade from HD, and most of the same equipment and software could be used with a few modifications. 4K is another ball game though.

Even worse there is 8K on the horizon as well which will require yet more brand new equipment. NHK, the Japanese national broadcaster that invented 8K, has stated that they will not support 4K at all and are instead going to look at going directly to 8K around 2020 (in time for the Olympics). I have a feeling they may not be alone in wanting to wait, but of course TV manufacturers all want to push 4K as a reason for the consumer to upgrade or pay a premium.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (2)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#45222735)

8K sounds like an opportunity for 3D 4K .....
Someone just has to have the balls to make a decision.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (1)

BullInChina (3376331) | about a year ago | (#45222745)

Unless of course someone comes up with 6 minute abs.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (2)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year ago | (#45222777)

3D TV doesn't actually exist. Every production model on the planet is a half assed fake 3D that a good portion of the population can't even actually perceive 3D from.

Its not 3D, its lameass stereoscopic.

3D TV requires my perspective to change when I move MY head, not just when the camera moves.

Re:I would love 4K!!! (4, Funny)

skids (119237) | about a year ago | (#45222867)

It will be like HD and 3D. In a few years it will become standard on mid range and even cheap TVs.

...and People On The Internet(TM) will still be complaining that it's all "hype" and will never make it in the market, even though they own one.

I want my games to have all the pixels! (5, Insightful)

Major Ralph (2711189) | about a year ago | (#45222513)

I can understand why 4k televisions may not take off, but 4k monitors will definitely be a big deal. Just look at how AMD and NVIDIA are gearing up their GPUs to support it.

Re:I want my games to have all the pixels! (1)

rogoshen1 (2922505) | about a year ago | (#45222747)

I always thought that one of the reasons that 1920x1080 monitors took off the way they did is because the same panel that goes in a 1080p tv, goes in a 1920x1080 monitor. Without that economy of scale (IE producing one panel for both the PC monitors and TV's), the prices would be even more bonkers expensive for early adopters.

in other words, if the 4k TV market doesn't explode, then don't count on PC monitors at that resolution being mainstream.

Re:I want my games to have all the pixels! (1, Informative)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | about a year ago | (#45222825)

1080p took off for the same reason macs did, marketing. 1900x1200 was starting to be common when everything suddenly got yanked back to 1080 because it was cheaper and marketing bullshit convinced people to pay more money for less monitor.

Re:I want my games to have all the pixels! (1)

somersault (912633) | about a year ago | (#45222761)

I'll start to be interested in 4K when there are cheap devices, displays and content worthy of driving a 4K display.

Until home consoles are rendering 4K@60 frames per second comfortably across all games, or super-mega-ultra-duper-bluray is becomes mainstream, I doubt your average joe will really care. Current generation consoles can't even do 1080p at decent framerates across all games. Though blu-ray is pretty nice.

Re:I want my games to have all the pixels! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222801)

$189 for a 3D 120 hz...nearly within my price range to ditch the old crt
and now all the headshots may belong to the burgeous ...damnit

There really is no point (4, Informative)

Jody Bruchon (3404363) | about a year ago | (#45222519)

Existing 1080p quality can't be discerned as better by someone sitting 10 feet away on a couch looking at a 42" TV. Going past 1080p has no value whatsoever unless you're talking about insanely huge screens or impractically close viewing.

Re:There really is no point (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222555)

Yeah, you should actually try it in real life. It absolutely is visible.

Re:There really is no point (2)

nitehawk214 (222219) | about a year ago | (#45222661)

Yeah, you should actually try it in real life. It absolutely is visible.

I think real life has somewhat higher resolution than 1080p.

Re:There really is no point (4, Funny)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#45222687)

I have some fine, genuine 24-karat gold-plated HDMI cables you may be interested in.

Re:There really is no point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222561)

or cinema screens , that is the only place where it makes sense.

Re:There really is no point (1)

j35ter (895427) | about a year ago | (#45222819)

Not even there, unless you like to sit in the first few rows

Re:There really is no point (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222565)

1080p ought to be good enough for anybody.

Re:There really is no point (1)

Luthair (847766) | about a year ago | (#45222567)

10 feet is well beyond the recommended viewing range for a 42" TV. THX for example would recommend 4-6 feet viewing distance for a 40" TV

Re:There really is no point (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#45222705)

Yeah, but does it say that on the TV's box, or anywhere in the documentation?

Parent is going by typical usage, not recommended usage.

Re:There really is no point (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#45222609)

Existing 1080p quality can't be discerned as better by someone sitting 10 feet away on a couch looking at a 42" TV. Going past 1080p has no value whatsoever unless you're talking about insanely huge screens or impractically close viewing.

A: Existing 1080p quality can't be discerned as better by someone sitting 10 feet away on a couch looking at a 42" TV
B: Going past 1080p has no value whatsoever unless you're talking about insanely huge screens or impractically close viewing

You're implying:
C: 42" is insanely huge.

My answer is:
C is demonstrably false, as I'm about two feet away from the screen I'm using at this very moment.
D is demonstrably false, as many sane people buy larger screens.

I suggest you rethink your position replacing distance and size by field of vision. Your previous statement would turn into "an field of vision over n degrees is useless". To which I'd answer "Anything less than my entire FoV is not enough."

Re:There really is no point (1)

nitehawk214 (222219) | about a year ago | (#45222677)

Existing 1080p quality can't be discerned as better by someone sitting 10 feet away on a couch looking at a 42" TV. Going past 1080p has no value whatsoever unless you're talking about insanely huge screens or impractically close viewing.

A: Existing 1080p quality can't be discerned as better by someone sitting 10 feet away on a couch looking at a 42" TV
B: Going past 1080p has no value whatsoever unless you're talking about insanely huge screens or impractically close viewing

You're implying:
C: 42" is insanely huge.

My answer is:
C is demonstrably false, as I'm about two feet away from the screen I'm using at this very moment.
D is demonstrably false, as many sane people buy larger screens.

I suggest you rethink your position replacing distance and size by field of vision. Your previous statement would turn into "an field of vision over n degrees is useless". To which I'd answer "Anything less than my entire FoV is not enough."

I am lost, what was D again?

Re:There really is no point (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#45222781)

I am lost, what was D again?

(fricking greater-than/less-than signs interpreted as markups...)

Re:There really is no point (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#45222703)

I meant
C: 42" is insanely huge.

C is demonstrably false, as I'm about two feet away from the screen I'm using at this very moment.
D is demonstrably false, as many sane people buy larger screens.

Re:There really is no point (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#45222727)

Go back to bed. Seriously.

Re:There really is no point (2)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#45222739)

...wtf...

Oh, ffs! I get it now.

C:.[UNDER]10 feet is impractically close
D: [OVER]42" is insanely huge.

Re:There really is no point (1)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#45222713)

You're implying:

C: 42" is insanely huge.

My answer is:
C is demonstrably false, as I'm about two feet away from the screen I'm using at this very moment.
D is demonstrably false, as many sane people buy larger screens.

I suggest you rethink your position replacing distance and size by field of vision. Your previous statement would turn into "an field of vision over n degrees is useless". To which I'd answer "Anything less than my entire FoV is not enough."

I've never understood these people who never get close to their monitor to see more detail.
For me it is the most natural thing to want to do instead of "zooming."
Just cause I can zoom doesn't mean that sometimes I won't want to actually get closer and look.

Re:There really is no point (3, Funny)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year ago | (#45222821)

You're 2 feet away from a 42" display?

Are you stupid? Does you neck hurt yet? Are you tired of having to lean over to get a good head on look at the 1/3rd of the screen on either side of the middle or do you just ignore 2/3rds of your screen.

Sitting 2 feet away from a 42" display makes you a moron unqualified to continue this conversation.

Re:There really is no point (1, Funny)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#45222919)

Sitting 2 feet away from a 42" display makes you a moron unqualified to continue this conversation.

Admit it, you're one of those people who refuse to sit in the front rows of a cinema, and prefers sitting at the back where the screen looks as tiny as your TV seen from your couch.

Re:There really is no point (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year ago | (#45222845)

I don't think that's what GP was implying at all.
In fact quite the opposite.

A. 1080p on 42" at 10 feet away is more than most people can discern.
B. More than 1080p on 42" at 10 feet away has no value. 1080p may have value if on a screen far bigger than 42" at 10 feet, or with 42" far closer than 10 feet.

So he seems to imply;
C: 42" is less than 'insanely huge'.

Also, your assertion of D may or may not be correct, since D is undefined.

Re:There really is no point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222861)

>C is demonstrably false, as I'm about two feet away from the screen I'm using at this very moment.

Is it a TV? Because there's no issue going to higher resolution for pure monitors. This is about broadcast standards.

Since there's really no such thing as a pure TV anymore, we're free to have have "4K" or whatever for computer/gaming use. This is about whether as consumers we want to pay replacing the entire cable and OTA infrastructure in order to gain a marginal benefit that's barely discernible at noticeable distances.

Re:There really is no point (1)

ciderbrew (1860166) | about a year ago | (#45222655)

Why are bigger screen insane and being closer impractical?

Re:There really is no point (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#45222737)

Not going to speak to the sanity of screen size, but with respect to sitting closer: most people would prefer watching television in a living room rather than a closet.

Re:There really is no point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222725)

Please don't link to that joke of a chart from carltonbale.com. The guy has no clue as to what he's talking about. FFS he's an MBA.

Re:There really is no point (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#45222731)

As people have hinted, go to a shop and look. 4K is really what 1080p 'should' have been finally years later. This will be great with new or cleaned up digital media.

Re:There really is no point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222769)

Divide the screen up to show multiple programs at one time, then let people use wireless headphones that support a choice of audio channels. That might be useful for groups, families, and people with multiple personalities. I wonder if a person could learn to follow both programs with a different one in each ear.

Added detail might make inclusion of a zoom function more desireable. But be careful what you watch or you may discover crabs!

It's too bad these giant sets use so much energy. They really ought to come with pedal-power generators and light-pipe (outdoor supplemented) backlighting.

not to mention compression & bit starving... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222897)

I could see 4K for blueray or predownloaded movies (I have a 97" projection screen & semi-dedicated theatre room) but there's no way cable, dbs or streaming will have enough bandwidth to do a sporting event justice considering how badly they butcher 1080 today...

Hnnnnnggggg (4, Insightful)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | about a year ago | (#45222531)

To make full use of that resolution ("Retina" quality, i.e. indistinguishable pixels) at a viewing distance of 10ft you'd need a screen 150" screen. That's 8ft wide 4ft6in tall.

Re:Hnnnnnggggg (2)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#45222805)

To make full use of that resolution ("Retina" quality, i.e. indistinguishable pixels) at a viewing distance of 10ft you'd need a screen 150" screen. That's 8ft wide 4ft6in tall.

Still much smaller than an average wall.

Re:Hnnnnnggggg (5, Insightful)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about a year ago | (#45222827)

The ability to see individual pixels is not the limit of perceptible improvement though. Even on 'retina' displays there is visible aliasing on diagonal lines. Think about it like this, a 12nm chip fab produces individual elements at 12nm, but places them with much, much better than 12nm accuracy.

Great (1)

Dunbal (464142) | about a year ago | (#45222541)

Cable companies have a hard enough time providing enough bandwidth for more than a couple HD channels, where are they going to find the bandwidth for 4K Ultra HD? Does Blue Ray even have the ability to take advantage of this technology? How about gaming platforms? What, exactly, would let someone be able to justify their investment?

Re:Great (1)

HaZardman27 (1521119) | about a year ago | (#45222597)

Supposedly the PS4 and Xbox One will support 4K displays, but I imagine it will be done by either upscaling or sacrificing various graphical effects.

Re:Great (2)

UnknowingFool (672806) | about a year ago | (#45222833)

Yes but 4K content can be rendered in a video game given the right hardware/software. 4K video requires that the content be recorded and sent at that resolution. Content providers like cable channels are now only producing all of their content in 1080p much less 4K.

Re:Great (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#45222615)

Cable companies have a hard enough time providing enough bandwidth for more than a couple HD channels, where are they going to find the bandwidth for 4K Ultra HD?

Exactly, I get 720p from TV, and in places I can see where they're compressing it down and it looks blocky.

In the abstract, this might be good. But from a practical purpose, my cable company isn't delivering 1080p to me now, there's no way they'd give me 4K.

This makes sense for movie theaters, but for consumers I think this is a complete dead end except for the people who insist on buying the latest and greatest just because it's there. This is just companies trying to sell us something new, and for which there's very little justification.

Re:Great (1)

FreonTrip (694097) | about a year ago | (#45222763)

Exactly - if content providers aren't even willing to send enough bitrate through the pipe to deliver a satisfactory experience by today's HD standards, who on Earth would imagine they'd do justice to 16x the bandwidth requirement just a few years from now? Some broadcasts are still MPEG-2; some others are MPEG-2 but get passed through a last-leg AVC transcoder to save bandwidth; and while AVC's enjoying healthy adoption, there's no way to expect most companies will pay the hefty fees to adopt HEVC equipment in time for this Great Leap Forward. 4K's swell for going to a theater or a similarly large exhibition area, but for most consumers the upgrade will be pretty trivial.

Re:Great (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#45222771)

Cable companies have a hard enough time providing enough bandwidth for more than a couple HD channels, where are they going to find the bandwidth for 4K Ultra HD?

They can start by charging for analog channels commensurately for the bandwidth they use, rather than giving away the analog stuff they modulate in-house for "free" while charging "extra" for digital content they've nothing to but encrypt.

Re:Great (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#45222799)

I think some are hoping good codec plus 'time' via local storage will out pace and bandwidth limits of rotting telco copper, HFC until optical is ready.
http://www.red.com/store/products/redray-player [red.com]

Re:Great (1)

ciderbrew (1860166) | about a year ago | (#45222907)

It's chicken and egg for the content Vs TV upgrade. Moving from a CRT to 1080p made sense 5-8 years ago. People will not want to throw away that expensive T.V. they just bought for many more years.
Cable companies will have to upgrade or go out of business - just as ever.
The huge amounts of data will be an issue; but not many people will buy the TVs right away. Also if you can buy high end kit you've got the cash to get better data into the house. Poor people get to wait their turn - as ever.
4K Blu-rays are being made; but dead in the water as the downloads are the way to go. PCs get a sales boost as you have to update your rig to be able to drive that screen. Mmmmm more lovely tech.
Lack of content is an issue.
Waiting for the hdmi updates is an issue.
Ps4s not being able to drive basic 4k games is a missed opportunity.

The Oculus rift and Jeri Ellsworth's system for head mounted displays make 4k less interesting; but as always .... This isn't an investment. It's an expensive waste of money and fun!

Fix HD First (5, Insightful)

Rob Riggs (6418) | about a year ago | (#45222543)

Why the heck would I want UHD when most HD content is so compressed that the artifacts are easily discernible from across the room. At least that is my experience with every HD medium I have seen OTA, cable, satellite, and to a much lesser degree in Blu-ray.

Re:Fix HD First (5, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year ago | (#45222679)

I came here to post this. I'm in the minority, but to my eye it is more pleasant to watch the old grainy picture than it is to watch compressed high resolution video. In particular, my eye gets drawn to grass. Every time I watch a game played on grass (baseball, football, the other football, etc), the digital compression just hijacks my eyes. I can learn to ignore it over time, like watching a movie with subtitles, but it still is not my preference.

Re:Fix HD First (3, Informative)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about a year ago | (#45222681)

I agree. Compression is the primary issue here. Make the resolution 10k and it'll still look like crap because of the heavy compression. But if you're claiming to see compression artifacts on a blu-ray disc I think you need your eyes checked. Those usually don't use anywhere near the compression of cable TV.

Re:Fix HD First (3, Insightful)

realityimpaired (1668397) | about a year ago | (#45222855)

Why the heck would I want UHD when most HD content is so compressed that the artifacts are easily discernible from across the room. At least that is my experience with every HD medium I have seen OTA, cable, satellite, and to a much lesser degree in Blu-ray.

You have a point, but you lost credibility when you included OTA in that list. OTA is uncompressed 18.2mbit MPEG. There is no point in compressing an OTA broadcast because the bandwidth is functionally unlimited, and I don't even think that the ATSC standard supports compression beyond normal MPEG2. When you see artifacts on an OTA broadcast it is most emphatically *not* from compression, it's usually from interference or a badly tuned/aligned antenna.

With a proper antenna setup, an OTA HD broadcast looks pristine... *way* better than the cable provider's offering. Some stations are broadcasting SD signals using digital/ATSC, but that is a completely different animal than compression.

All that said, I can't make a case for wanting UHD either. Compression aside, it's an incremental upgrade that the majority of users won't notice. The jump from an SD stream to an HD stream was a *huge* improvement, but the jump from HD to UHD simply isn't that much better. I liken it to Sharp's introduction of the yellow pixel in their TV's -- Most people have trichromatic vision, and the 3 colours included in a normal TV (Red/Green/Blue) were chosen because those are the colours of the cones in your eye. Ignoring the fact that *none* of the media is encoded for RGBY, the addition of the yellow doesn't add anything because your eye physically can't see the additional colour depth. In order to actually see the improved picture from UHD, you need to be sitting close enough to the TV that most people would be uncomfortable.

Obligatory disclaimer: I work for a company that provides IPTV/Satellite services, and we also own broadcast TV stations.

Simple reason ... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#45222549)

There's a simple reason for this ... people don't care, and don't have the money to replace their TVs just because something new and shiny comes along.

I'd need to replace my amp, my DVD player (or whatever it would be called), my TV and who knows what else. All to get me a marginally better display?

No thanks.

I'm interested in 4K for my computer monitor, but the ever changing standards around TV makes it a nuisance.

I know plenty of people who bought "HDTV" early in the game, only to find out when HD became common than their devices weren't supported because the spec had changed. Or that they wouldn't get HD because their device didn't support the copy protection scheme.

What consumers want is a stable technology, not be be on a constant upgrade treadmill (as much as the people who sell TVs would like otherwise).

NTSC was unchanged and compatible for what, 40 odd years? When things stabilize in a bunch of years I might consider thinking about 4K -- but right now it's a pointless and expensive upgrade for little or no benefit.

Unfortunately the content industry seems to think we're all going to ditch our stuff every two years as the new hotness comes out. And in the case of 3D, it's gimmicky and gives me a headache, so I never wanted that at all.

That the TV networks are thinking "why would be invest in this" makes perfect sense to me -- because there's no market for it.

For computers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222575)

And to add: For computers the reason is simply in readability. Higher pixel density, e.g. 27" and 4K would make the reading almost pleasure.

Re:Simple reason ... (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year ago | (#45222751)

What consumers want is a stable technology, not be be on a constant upgrade treadmill

There are different kinds of consumers. What you say is probably true of the consumers buying their sets at Walmart and Target, and it's probably true of me as well (at least to a degree). But I know plenty of people who are always on the bleeding edge. This 4k stuff is blatantly targeted at those consumers, and it may or may not trickle down to the rest of us... sometimes these high end things succeed (hi-fi VHS, HDTV) and sometimes they fail (videodisk, DVD audio), but the high-end, bleeding edge folks get to decide that, not the conservative consumers.

Re:Simple reason ... (1)

DutchUncle (826473) | about a year ago | (#45222877)

This++. We needed a new TV when our old analog one died, and hoped to future-proof ourselves by buying an HDTV ( Sony WEGA). Has always worked as advertised. But it's not HDMI, and it's not 1080, and it's not fully compatible with Blu-ray; but we're not about to spend the money for an equivalent-or-better quality & size new TV until 3D stabilizes (which probably means "never", but that's another problem).

OTOH I watched the original Star Trek in B&W, so complaining about HD always seems a little . . . whiny.

Conflict of MY interest. (1)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about a year ago | (#45222551)

We can't have 4k TV AND those broadband caps at the same time. I couldn't possibly afford digital entertainment under those conditions.

Diminishing returns (0)

ugen (93902) | about a year ago | (#45222557)

Conventional display and media delivery technologies have reached a point of diminishing returns long ago. Humans are perfectly happy at current (and even somewhat outdated) resolution and quality. Any increases from now on do not improve viewer experience in a measurable way, at least not for majority of users.

On the other hand the "total quality" of "media output" seems to be a constant, while the amount is increasing exponentially - so each individual piece is, well, you know... (Disclaimer: I do not own a TV, may be things have improved recently?)

Re:Diminishing returns (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year ago | (#45222767)

may be things have improved recently?

Yes, there are more channels that show old stuff :)

Re:Diminishing returns (1)

ohieaux (2860669) | about a year ago | (#45222775)

Conventional display and media delivery technologies have reached a point of diminishing returns long ago. Humans are perfectly happy at current (and even somewhat outdated) resolution and quality. Any increases from now on do not improve viewer experience in a measurable way, at least not for majority of users.

I agree on the diminishing returns. I don't have an HD box (no OTA where I live) and watch almost exclusively SD. I have a USB stick that gets some HD, but I usually watch SD.

Why? The information (image/sound) is there in SD. HD adds higher resolution, but what I want to see and hear is conveyed in the SD. All HD does is fill my disk up with huge files. When I move them to my tablet, or stream them, it's too much wasted space or bandwith.

Re:Diminishing returns (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222863)

I could not agree more.

You insens1tiv3 clod! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222559)

community. The pro-homosexual since we made the turnfed over to yet result of a quarrel purposes *BSD is everyday...Redefine

TVs are at PC saturation levels (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222563)

What most of us have is more than good enough unless you suffer from techo-lust or keeping up with the Joneses. Large 1080p HDTVs can be picked up for sub $1000, they're not great, suffer from blooming, spotlighting, banding etc, but the vast majority of people don't notice or care, they just love the large image.

blu-ray can already handle 4K, later level HDMI is ready too. Players on the other hand aren't on the market, and the dearth of content will ensure that remains the case.

Problem is, most content struggles to do 1080p (3, Interesting)

ShooterNeo (555040) | about a year ago | (#45222571)

As it is right now, the only true 1080p content is high bitrate blu-ray disks, and PC games. There is nothing else.

None of the currently released consoles can render 1920x1080 at 60 fps : they use a lower frame rate (30 fps) and a lower rendering resolution (not even 720p internally for most games). The next gen can maybe do it, but I suspect that some games will use lower frame rates or internal resolutions so that they can put more detail into other things.

Broadcast channels, satellite channels, and HD cable channels all generally are full of lower bit-rate tradeoffs. You need about 30-50 mbps to do 1080p without compromises or visible encoding errors.

Maybe in another 10 years, when the technology is actually fully utilizing the 1080p displays we already have, will an upgrade make sense.

Note that this is for video content. For your computer or tablet PC, higher resolutions are useful, and shipping tablets are already at higher resolutions.

Still don't get 1080p (1)

Saethan (2725367) | about a year ago | (#45222573)

I still don't get 1080p over digital cable, I don't see 4k coming anytime soon. The only 1080p content I have that gets displayed on my TV is blu-ray, video games, and digital downloads.

Isn't it all about demand? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222579)

3D is failing not due to lack of content or price; there simply isn't a large enough demand. You can create demand with the right products and service (e.g. Apple iXxx), but in the end the success or failure lies with the consumers. I'm not sure that people are going to care about 4k until everyone has 65+" TVs and the fidelity difference becomes substantial.

Sony (1)

Luthair (847766) | about a year ago | (#45222587)

Is also a movie studio and is already selling 4k content.

volume control (1)

schneidafunk (795759) | about a year ago | (#45222589)

But do the speakers go to 11?

4K != 3D (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222599)

There is one major road block to the acceptance of 3D that 4K does not have. Some people don't actually like watching movies or tv in 3D. 4K is not going to have that problem. Nobody would say I would rather watch something in 1080p over 4K.

Cap (1)

tepples (727027) | about a year ago | (#45222741)

Nobody would say I would rather watch something in 1080p over 4K.

When monthly Internet usage caps are factored in, how about "I'd rather watch four movies at 1080p than one movie at 4K"?

All it needs it the right marketing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222607)

All it needs it the right marketing, but sports fans are the usually market for these things. They're willing to spend any amount of money "for the team." The fact that someone from ESPN is out there trying to convince his viewership that it's not necessary is pretty significant.

3D - and I love it... (2)

PortHaven (242123) | about a year ago | (#45222613)

I really do. It wasn'tmuch added cost. And yes, the problem is content.Movie makes should do the year of 3D. And actually sell the 3D at the same price. People would buy more 3DTVs.

Re:3D - and I love it... (1)

dmbasso (1052166) | about a year ago | (#45222893)

I came to ask that, there must surely be some more 3DTV owners here. I'm interested to hear not only about movies, but about games and other interactive media. Does anybody here have used Blender (or Maya / whatever) with a 3DTV / monitor?

Re:3D - and I love it... (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year ago | (#45222901)

You don't have a 3D TV. You have a shitty stereoscopic knock-off.

Real 3D would let you see around corners in the movie when you moved your head to the side, but when your head moves, nothing happens. You don't see a different perspective without the camera moving. This is not 3D.

Congratulations, you've got a shitty knock off that a large portion of the population just gets a headache from because its so poorly done, and even better, you think you've got something bad ass.

Re:3D - and I love it... (1)

geekoid (135745) | about a year ago | (#45222905)

A problem is content.
Other issue include a fairly large group of people who can't use them, and the expense of glasses.
For example, we are a family of 4. We like guest so we would need at least 6 glasses.

However, it seems t be included with every TV these days, so maybe when we by another TV the glasses cost will be negligible.

The movie studios will come eventually (1)

zoffdino (848658) | about a year ago | (#45222617)

The movie studios will eventually jump on board. They need something new to sell you the old movies again. Jaws on VHS, Jaws on DVD, Jaws on Bluray, Jaws 3D. Jaws 4K--why not? 4K will also be useful for the video editing industry. Cramming 4 x 1080p streams into a monitor is a huge productivity booster, if your computer is able to handle it. Unlike 3D, 4K has some real applications.

Can't escape the laws of physics (1, Insightful)

PvtVoid (1252388) | about a year ago | (#45222623)

OK, let's to the numbers here.

The resolution of the human eye for somebody with astoundingly good vision is about one arc minute. At a distance of 3 meters, that means that the smallest thing you can see is about 0.9mm across. If the width of my screen is 1.5 meters, that means there is NO FUCKING POINT in making the display more than 1667 pixels across. For a smaller screen, say 1 meter wide, the limit is 1111 pixels. Which is why I never bothered to buy more than 720p for my 32" monitor, because only Superman would be able to notice the difference of a higher resolution screen at the distance from my couch to the TV.

4K is the video equivalent of Monster Cable.

Re:Can't escape the laws of physics (1, Troll)

Russ1642 (1087959) | about a year ago | (#45222721)

I think you'll find your math ok, but your conclusions wrong.

Re:Can't escape the laws of physics (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222773)

You just need to look at the higher resolution phones to realize what you're saying is bullshit (and those are ridiculously small 5" screens, although albeit you do look at it closer than a television). The so-called "retina" display by Apple is still far short of the maximum resolution we can see. Have you actually gone and looked at a 1080p display before deciding on your 720p monitor, or did you trust your flawed math and went with it? Here's the actual math [clarkvision.com] with references to the visual acuity numbers.

Re:Can't escape the laws of physics (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | about a year ago | (#45222899)

If the width of my screen is 1.5 meters

If you could have a cheap screen as big and resistant as your wall (a wall that projects an image). How much resolution would you want on that screen?

Now consider that what's expensive for you might be cheap for someone else.

Absolutely agree (1)

It doesn't come easy (695416) | about a year ago | (#45222635)

There is way too must current content that is still not transmitted in 1080p. Buying a new (expensive) TV just to display most shows in standard resolution makes no sense at all. Yes, I know live broadcasts are usually in high def, but one can only watch so must sports on TV. To be fair, I think it is actually a legacy problem. There is so much good legacy content recorded in standard definition that it is tough for new content to compete, at least from a percentage perspective. Best excuse for a good movie or TV series remake that I have heard...

Higher Frame rates. (1)

plebeian (910665) | about a year ago | (#45222683)

Having more pixels is all well and good but I would rather have a higher frame rate so that we do not have to rely so heavily on interpolation to reduce artifacts in action shots.

Still a ways out (1)

Necreia (954727) | about a year ago | (#45222723)

Actual 1080p isn't even here yet for a lot of media. Most games and TV stations still only use 720p, and there are quite a few movies in that mode as well. It's no surprise that no major content provider is considering 4K at this point.

I figured 4K was too soon (1)

erroneus (253617) | about a year ago | (#45222765)

The timing for 4K is just too soon and wrong. Firstly, we're in a delicate financial situation around the world and the biggest consumer nation is on the edge of collapse. It seems like only a few days ago we went to digital TV. People are STILL getting rid of the CRT TVs. And the marketers are trying to sell us 4K TVs??! I'm sorry but no. Just no.

Re:I figured 4K was too soon (1)

geekoid (135745) | about a year ago | (#45222873)

We are n't on any edge to collapse. Stop repeating that nonsense.
Every indicator for the economy has been trending up for about 6 years.

" It seems like only a few days ago we went to digital TV. "
over a decade.

" People are STILL getting rid of the CRT TVs"
so there are people looking to upgrade to 4k.

"I'm sorry but no. Just no."
I'm sorry, but yes, just yes.

misunderstanding (2)

argStyopa (232550) | about a year ago | (#45222791)

3d TV's failure was most certainly not a 'lack of content' and if it's perceived that way by the media mavens, then the same mistakes will be repeated.

3d failed because:
- technologically not-ready-for-prime-time; wearing uncomfortable specs etc wasn't popular in theaters the FIRST go around with 3d.
- people recognized it for what it was: a money-grab by hardware producers trying to re-milk the public that had already been forced to go out and buy all-new digital tvs.

Broadcast TV moves slowly... (1)

evilviper (135110) | about a year ago | (#45222795)

Just give it up. Broadcast TV standards don't change overnight, and 4k is going to take huge effort, to provide a small improvement.

You're talking about making all those receivers people just went out and bough, completely useless. The government would have to PAY to replace them, just like they did with digital converter boxes a few years ago.

And don't tell me about satellite/cable companies! They lag BEHIND broadcasters, they do not take the LEAD... And internet service looks to be more bandwidth constrained than the airwaves for at least another decade or two.

In short, we had no improvements to NTSC for 56 years... You can expect to to get H.269 encoded, 4k resolution TV broadcasts right around the year 2065. So please STFU and stop whining about it. Go dust off your old laserdisc player, and dream your 3D 4k dreams in peace where we can't hear you sobbing.

Its like... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222807)

Mega Ultra Chuck Norris Full Effing Optimus Prime HD!

Using a Tomahawk Cruise Missile to kill an ant... just don't make any sense.

It's th contrast stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222811)

What we need is a bigger contrast range, not more pixels that go nowhere.

Whay doesn't /. save some time (4, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | about a year ago | (#45222835)

and just repost every complaint about going to 1080p form 10 years ago? Jest replace 1080 with 4k.
Or flat screen with 4k.

People are going to want 4k because it's stunning.

If I had time I would look at the history of the loud complainers and see if they were the people saying no one would do HD or pay for a flat screen.

Why switch conventions for measuring resolution? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45222847)

Why did they switch from using vertical pixels as the dominant label (720, 1080) to using horizontal pixels as the dominant label (4k)?

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